1. Can A Computer Have A Mind



  • lack of understanding of the fund laws of physics that prevents us from understanding concept of mind
  • question of whether a mech. device could ever be said to think

The Turing Test

  • operationalist view: computer thinks provided that it acts indistinguishably from the way a person acts while thinking*
  • turing test unfair (if roles reversed), part of programmer task is to make the computer seem stupider than it actually is
    • main problem - common sense problems
  • proposal: weaken turing test, interviewer should feel that there is a conscious presence underlying replies

Artificial Intelligence

  • first AI: W. Grey Walter’s tortoise
  • humans take advantage of ‘judgements’ that rely on comparitively slow conscious assessment
    • cut down computational complexity
    • consciousness <=> forming judgements

An AI Approach to Pleasure and Pain

  • pp-score (~RL) -> pleasure/pain matrix
  • AI field ripe for improvement, but we might be missing some principle for true intelligence

Strong AI and Searle’s Chinese Room

  • strong AI: mental qualities of a sort can be attributed to the logical functioning of any computational device
  • mental activity= algorithm
  • difference between humn brain and thermostat lies in higher order structure or self-referential properties of alo
  • Searle: ispute that mental states and algo can be identified with one another
  • Chinese room: stories given in chinese but operations for computer algo given in english w/ chinese symbols
    • Searle could get correct response by just following the symbols w/o understanding…so computers do not need to understand!
  • refutations
    1. understanding relates to patterns, not just words…recognize patterns in Chinese
    2. could be some algo so large that impossible for humans to solve, but computer could
  • in essence, Searle claims that no algo can embody genuine understanding
  • strong AI a form of Dualism (mind structure of AI is logical structure of an algo)
  • further reading A Conversation with Einsteins Brain by Douglas Hofstadter

Hardware and Software

  • all modern gen purpose computers are universal Turing machines
  • strongest factor underlying strongAI: equivalence between physical computing devices (hardware relatively unimportant)
  • interchangeable particles quantum physics….
  • continual turnover of atoms in persons body != change in identity
  • strongAI: persons aweness is software, manifestation is hardware
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